Cycling Furkapass from Gletsch (western approach)
Ride 16.3 kilometers gaining 1,063 meters at 6.5% average grade.
Furka Pass is located in the Andermatt World Climb Zone which is an amazing area to climb by bike with at least 12 HC climbs within a 35 kilometer radius, including 3 climbs in the World Top 100 (one in the Top 10). For the crazies out there, this climb can also be linked with Grimsel Pass (both sides), Gotthard and Nufenen (climb page; 180 kilometers, 6,625 meters), or a bit more tame route - Furka-Gotthard-Nufenen-Grimsel (117 kilometers, gaining 4,233 meters), or many other versions. Our routes are offered only to give you a sense of what is possible in this exceptional climbing area.
The climb begins in begins in Obergoms and passes through Gletsch (German shorthand for glacier) at 6 kilometers. This climb is in the upper Swiss Rhone Valley, one of the greatest climbing areas in the world.
Gletsch is at the crossroads of Grimsel and Furka Passes and used to be at the foot of the Great Rhone Glacier which has since retreated many kilometers up the mountain due to global warming.
Furka Oberlap Railway runs through Gletsch
The view up towards Furkapass on the first hairpin after leaving Gletsch.
Aerial view of the main attractions in the area.
First segment of the climb.
The Furkapass ascents are just to the south of Rhone Glacier which is the source of the Rhone River and one of the major contributors to Lake Geneva.
Middle segment of Furkenpass.
Furkapass has been included in several Tour de Suisse stages, most recently the Queen Stage (stage 9) of the 2019 Tour, won by Hugh Carthy (UK).
7 final hairpins for 2.9 km 2 km from the top averaging 7.8%.
Belvédère Hotel (aka Hairpin Hotel)
Opened circa 1866, The Belvédère began its journey as a luxury resort in the early 20th century. Positioned on a hairpin bend just beneath Furkapass, it boasts breathtaking views of the winding roads below, the western vistas of Grimselpass, and the nearby Rhone Glacier, easily accessible for hikes. While it closed its doors in 2015, in its prime, it hosted luminaries like Pope John XXIII and Sean Connery, who even filmed segments of 'Goldfinger' in its vicinity.
At 2436 meters, Furkapass is one of the highest passes in Switzerland.
Furkapass is included in the Grand Tour of Switzerland which is a famous motor vehicle route that takes in many of the amazing and scenic views of Switzerland.
Grand Tour of Swizerland
1600 kilometers, 22 lakes, 5 alpine passes 12 UNESCO World Heritage sites.
In addition to Furkapass, the Grand Tour includes Gotthard Pass, Sustenpass and Grimselpass in this area.